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William Henry Gates III was born in Seattle, Washington, to William H. Gates, Jr. and Mary Maxwell Gates. His family was wealthy; his father was a prominent lawyer, his mother served on the board of directors for First Interstate Bank and the United Way, and her father, J. W. Maxwell, was a national bank president. Gates has one older sister, Kristi (Kristianne), and one younger sister, Libby. He was the fourth of his name in his family, but was known as William Gates III or "Trey" because his father had dropped his own "III" suffix. Several writers claim that Maxwell set up a million-dollar trust fund for Gates. A 1993 biographer who interviewed both Gates and his parents (among other sources) found no evidence of this and dismissed it as one of the "fictions" surrounding Gates's fortune. Gates denied the trust fund story in a 1994 interview, and indirectly in his 1995 book The Road Ahead.
Gates excelled in elementary school, particularly in mathematics and the sciences. At thirteen he enrolled in the Lakeside School, Seattle's most exclusive preparatory school. When he was in the eighth grade, the school mothers used proceeds from Lakeside's rummage sale to buy an ASR-33 teletype terminal and a block of computer time on a General Electric computer. Gates took an interest in programming the GE system in BASIC and was excused from math classes to pursue his interest. After the Mothers Club donation was exhausted he and other students sought time on other systems, including DEC PDP minicomputers. One of these systems was a PDP-10 belonging to Computer Center Corporation, which banned the Lakeside students for the summer after it caught them exploiting bugs in the operating system to obtain free computer time.Source(s): wikipedia